Masters thesis, The University of Texas School of Health Information Sciences at Houston.
Health informatics, a combination of healthcare and information technology, has the potential to fundamentally change the way clinical trials are conducted. Intelligent systems for example, can analyze and improve study protocols. Study forms created with user-centered design principles may decrease data input errors. Digitized study materials offer streamlined communication and instant access to documents. Applying health informatics to clinical trials is both an evolutionary and revolutionary process. Digital tools, such as multimedia consent “forms,” may one day replace some research documents, eliminating long and confusing paperwork. Administrative processes could be augmented and improved, for example computer-based patient scheduling or meetings conducted over the Internet. Clinical trials using health informatics is a new and fertile arena. This paper provides an overview of the advantages informatics brings to clinical trial research.